Ahead of our ‘Improving communications with coaching conversations’ workshop next week with Simply Amazing Training, trainer Dee Clayton shares how a coaching culture can improve your business.
In a conversation I had with a company director recently, they said they would not be investing in development because there was no burning problem that needed fixing within their company. While I understand that everyone needs to prioritise resources, the best (and most efficient) time to invest in change and personal/team development is before things are broken.
Here, I’ve shared some of the most objections I hear when I talk about coaching conversations. While some of them may sound like positives, scratch the surface and some real challenges lurk beneath.
“We all get on really well”
Just because there are no arguments and disagreements within a company, it doesn’t mean that everyone agrees. A healthy company is one in which different points of view can be heard and discussed in a safe environment. A good manager should go out of their way to encourage employees to speak up and have their views listened to and valued.
In his book The Advantage, Patrick Lenchioni talks about teamwork being the single most untapped competitive advantage. He outlines the five levels to a cohesive team, trust being the first step and conflict the second. Team members should be able to engage in unfiltered, constructive debate of ideas.
“Everyone does as they are told”
Some managers love the fact that their employees do as they are told, but that doesn’t empower them to be their best. Times have changed. You want employees who are able to think for themselves and come up with new and innovative ways of doing things or continually make small changes. The way to truly engage people in their work is to involve them and make them feel part of what is going on, rather than making them feel like a cog in a wheel.
“I know best”
In many organisations, managers have been promoted because of their knowledge, expertise and ability to do their job well. But as a manager, your main skill set has changed. It’s no longer about your ability to do the job well, but to lead a team. Good managers enable their teams to do their best, meaning the person who has stepped into your old role might even be doing a better job than you did! Marshall Goldsmith explains this principle brilliantly in the book What Got You Here Won’t Get You There.
When I train people on the different personality styles, it is very clear that we all have strengths and weaknesses. In order to gain a competitive advantage and improve our services to customers, we need to understand our employees’ views and opinions. We need to appreciate the uniqueness they bring to the team, and embrace it when they think of something in a completely different way to how we would. All personality types should be represented on a team – whether that be based on people’s style preferences or people’s flexibility and ability to tap into the different styles within themselves.
This is what a coaching culture is all about
To me, a coaching culture is when a company encourages conversation that enables people to come up with their own solutions so they have more ownership of their projects, ideas and timelines. And when the time comes, they will feel more than able to propose alternative views. This allows healthy debate and decisions to be made taking everyone’s view into account. It’s not necessarily decision by committee because the project lead may still make the final call, but they have heard, understood and respected other points of view.
Join us for our next event
Dee Clayton from Simply Amazing Training is working with Bond Williams Professional Recruitment to deliver a workshop on Tuesday 20th November. We will look at what coaching is (and is not) and why it is beneficial. We will learn a proven process called the “50 Coaching Model” and practice it in a safe environment. For more information and to book, please visit the Eventbrite page.
Claire has over 20 years Recruitment experience. A specialist in the regional recruitment marketplace, Claire has extensive local knowledge and holds a reputation for quality, integrity, honesty and excellent matching. Heading up the HR and Office & Commercial Divisions of Bond Williams. Claire is responsible for the overall growth and …